Nepal is home to some of the most spectacular treks in the world. While the classic Everest Base Camp and Annapurna Circuit treks have earned their reputation for a reason, they've become quite crowded. Up and coming treks, such as the Manaslu Circuit Trek and the Three Passes Trek, are now considered better options for those hikers who seek the ultimate Himalayan experience. The list has been updated in 2017 to reflect the most recent conditions.
Nepal Travel Insights
Nepal is best-known for the Himalayas, Mount Everest and its amazing treks. Eight of the world’s 14 eight thousand meter peaks are located in Nepal, creating world-class mountaineering and trekking opportunities. But Nepal has much more to offer than just its mountains. Its capital, Kathmandu, is a bustling city with seven Unesco World Heritage sites including Boudhanath, the world largest buddhist stupa. The Nepalese lowlands in the south are subtropical and are home to tigers, elephants and rhinos. The people of Nepal are among the warmest and most welcoming in the world.
Most people visit Nepal in spring and autumn, but in recent years winter and summer have become popular seasons as well. Trekking in the Himalaya is a life-changing experience for many travelers. Longer treks include the Everest Base Camp Trek, the Annapurna Circuit, and the newly popular Manaslu Circuit, while shorter treks such as the Ghorepani Trek to Poon Hill offer experiences travelers who want to experience the mountains at lower elevations. Rafting the rivers of Nepal is also world-class, and so is mountain biking on Nepal's countless trails and paragliding above the Phewa Lake in Pokhara.
Twenty-five years ago, New Zealand native Jamie McGuinness followed his muse and took a break from university to travel the world. During that time, trekking became his passion, and he has been exploring the Himalaya ever since.
Looking to explore the cultural, more relaxing side of Nepal? Showcasing dazzling temples and world heritage squares, placid lakes and serene mountains, this week-long itinerary takes in the classic sights of Nepal as well as the more off-the-beaten path experiences, including Nepal’s famous lake town, Pokhara.
The classic picture of Nepal includes huge mountain landscapes featuring icy peaks against a crisp blue sky, and possibly a yak or two. We love this picture, but we like it even more when there is a mountain bike coming down the trail!
Richard has been living and working in Nepal for the last seven years, and is a major force behind the trail running scene and the opening of the Manaslu Circuit as a teahouse trek. We caught up with Richard not long ago to learn more about how these initiatives gained traction.
This has to be the ultimate adventure trip in Nepal. Combining a breathtaking Himalayan trek (with views of Everest can we add!) with some world class whitewater. 11 days off the beaten track, and very much in the wild! You’ll need a great sense of adventure for this trip as the rapids are non-stop for the first few days and pretty hardcore. If you’re looking for a trip to get your heart pounding – this is the one!
This is the longest and largest river in Nepal, springing from the sacred mountain of Mount Kailash in Tibet. This trip combines 4 epic days of intense whitewater followed by a more gentle float where you can soak up all the mind-blowing scenery. Finishing at Bardia National Park, you can combine this trip with a few days in the park on safari looking for tigers.
Taking you through the heart of Nepal, this river trip is rated one of the top ten river journeys in the world by National Geographic. Well off the beaten track, you'll spend your days enjoying great whitewater, warm weather and the evenings camping on pristine, white sandy beaches.
Tucked between eight of the world’s highest mountains, Nepal is a mecca for extreme adventure. You can climb up, zip down, trek across and soar by some of the world’s most stunning landscapes.
Nepal offers a wide variety of trekking trails. For travelers who are short on time, here are some of the best short treks Nepal has to offer ranging from 3 to 10 days. Each of these treks can be extended... the number of days listed here represents the minimum number of days you need to complete these trails.
One of Nepal's most classic short treks, this route takes you to the foot of some of the tallest mountains in the world. Along the way, you'll spend the night in two famous base camps with close-up views of Annapurna I and Machapuchare.
When you think of Nepal, the first thing that probably springs to mind is Mt. Everest, the Himalaya, and trekking. Well, have you ever thought about it as a rafting destination?
One of the classic treks in Nepal, this popular route takes you all the way from subtropical jungle to high-altitude plateau, culminating in Thorung La at 5418m.
While the fall season may have the clearest skies, trekking during the monsoon has its own advantages. Some treks should be avoided, but for certain regions it's a great time to visit Nepal: the trails are less crowded, the villages are full of life and the valleys are in bloom.
With the highest mountains in the world, Nepal is a diverse country that rises from dense jungle to snow-clad peaks in just over 100 miles. Its capital and largest city, Kathmandu, is a bustling metropolis with deep ties to history, culture and ancient religion. Its religions - Hinduism and Buddhism - melt together and lure Western travelers. With unparalleled terrain and adventure, Nepal never fails to deliver an unforgettable experience.
The Ghandruk Trek (sometimes also referred to as the Ghandrung Trek) is a great trekking option for those who are in Nepal for a shorter time, or want to combine a relatively short trek with other activities in Nepal. The trek is typically done in 3 or 4 days.
Most treks in Nepal are 'teahouse' treks, which means every night you end up at a simple lodge with basic rooms and a meal. The best thing about teahouse trekking - you only have to carry very minimal gear.
This 20-minute scenic flight takes you along a corridor up the Kali Gandaki valley to Jomsom at the northern end of the Annapurna Circuit. Along the way, enjoy spectacular views of Dhaulagiri, Nilgiri, and the entire Annapurna Range.
More similar to Tibet than Nepal, the Upper Mustang Valley is marked by its stark beauty, unique culture, and was until 2006 its own mountain kingdom.
Nepal’s mountains are formidable but Raj Gyawali says they can be accessible to almost anyone. Whether he’s leading a family tour, a special needs tour, or a niche tour, Raj says his trekkers will have the experience of a lifetime and leave Nepal with a sense of accomplishment.
One of the most popular short treks in Nepal, this trek gives you access to one of Nepal's classic view points in Poon Hill, before passing through the heritage village of Ghandruk.
Offering epic Himalayan views, Poon Hill (3210m / 10,532 ft) is a popular destination for trekkers in the Annapurna region of Nepal. Most people arrive here in the early morning to enjoy the beautiful sunrise views.
Ranging from 12-16 days, this famous trek takes you to the foot of Mt. Everest and is steeped in mountaineering history. Not only does it have some of the most iconic mountain views in the world, it is rich in culture and heritage of the Sherpa people.
Nepal is home to 8 of the 14 highest peaks in the world. One of the key attractions of traveling to Nepal is to take in stunning views of these Himalayan giants. Here are some of the top view points, with instructions on how to visit them.
Sagarmatha National Park offers up some of the highest treks in the world. To help decide which trek is best for you, here's a list of the main trekking routes with the duration and highlights for each. You'll have great views on all these treks, but which one you choose will depend on your time frame, budget, and appetite for challenge.
It's important to pack the right items for your trek. Don't forget important things, and definitely don't bring too much as you and/or your porter won't be happy with a load that's too heavy. Here is a list of what you need for a comfortable trekking adventure.
Famous for its mountain airports, Nepal has a set schedule of domestic flights that can give you access to all parts of the country. Often, it’s best to take a local flight to safe yourself long drives when you only have a short amount of time in Nepal.
Here are 5 places for WiFi in Pokhara, Nepal’s second biggest city and major traveler hub, based on our experience being here with the kimkim team on a quick business trip.
The Manaslu Circuit trek is far less crowded than other classic treks in Nepal and remains a true remote adventure, despite its increasing in popularity since teahouses were built here in 2010. The Manaslu trek features all the great aspects of a classic trek in Nepal: epic scenery, spectacular suspension bridge crossings and a 5100m (17,000-ft.) Himalayan pass.
The Annapurna foothills make for some of the best short treks in Nepal: classic views of Nepal's famous snow-capped peaks, a variety of routes ranging from 3-10 days, and relatively easy trekking given the altitude and local village teahouses.
Trekking in Nepal - A Guide to the Best Trekking Areas, Best Time to Go, and Tips on How to Organize Your Trek
Trekking through the Himalayas is Nepal’s key attraction, and tends to be a life-changing experience for travelers, regardless of whether they are experienced hikers, or beginners. This article is a primer to trekking in Nepal and attempts to help answer frequently asked questions about trekking in Nepal.
Out of the many lodging options in Kathmandu we have handpicked half a dozen authentic hotels we love. These hotels range from affordable to luxurious, and they all have a unique character.
Influenced by both Indian and Tibetan cuisine, Nepalese food has its own rich flavors and aromas. Here's a selection of dishes you shouldn't miss during your trip to Nepal.
Mads Mathiasen has been trekking through Nepal for 20 years. These days, he does everything from short, child-friendly treks with his young son to rugged wilderness adventures with friends. And he is an expert who plans treks for visitors to Nepal, from first-timers to regular returners.
Heading to Nepal? Everyone needs a visa (except Indian nationals), but luckily it’s an easy process. Here’s the latest information on obtaining a tourist visa and how it works for visa-on-arrival.
The view from Pikey Peak may be the best view in Nepal. That’s a bold statement indeed, but Edmund Hillary himself claimed it his favourite view of Everest and I’m inclined to agree with him. The advantage of being slightly further away from the big peaks is the views stretch further and encompass more.
Here’s a trip plan that gives you a taste of what Nepal has to offer within a week: a short trek with great views of the Himalaya combined with a visit to the ancient cities of Bhaktapur and Patan. You'll stay within striking distance of Kathmandu.
In May 2015, Nepal was struck by a 7.8 magnitude earthquake. Many travelers are still wondering if it's safe to visit Nepal. The short answer is "yes". The earthquake has caused severe damage in certain regions, but the country is rebuilding and open for travel.
The Khopra Danda trek (also known as the Khopra Ridge trek) is a great alternative to the more popular (and more crowded) Ghorepani trek, taking you higher still to another great viewpoint of the Annapurnas.
Nepal is a land of breathtaking beauty around every corner, ancient cultures, adventures and mind-boggling diversity. So what makes a crossing of one of many of Nepal's high pass worth writing about?
For those who can take 2 weeks of vacation to visit Nepal, here is a 12-day itinerary that allows you to experience the highlights of Nepal: Culture in Kathmandu, a short trek in the Himalayan foothills near Pokhara, and a jungle safari in Chitwan National Park in the southern lowlands of Nepal.